Friday, September 1, 2017
Harassment Restraining Order Against Director In City Attorney’s Office Denied to Deputy
By a MetNews Staff Writer
Onica Cole, a deputy Los Angeles city attorney who has launched a campaign for election next year to the county’s superior court, yesterday lost her bid for a permanent order to the human resources director in her office to stay at least 10 yards away from her.
Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Rolf Treu on Aug. 8 issued a temporary restraining order to that effect, which was to expire last Tuesday when a hearing was scheduled to be held on whether to extend the order. Treu, who sits downtown, was unavailable on that day, and the matter was shifted to Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Virginia Keeny, stationed in Van Nuys.
She ruled yesterday in favor of defendant Cristina Sarabia, finding no evidence of continuous harassment.
Cole, who came in last in a five-person race for a Superior Court judgeship last year, contended that Sarabia, accompanied by others, on May 30 angrily confronted her at her desk while she was on the telephone, demanding to know what work she had done that day.
According to Cole’s declaration:
“She carried on the conversation for at least ten minutes, my head was cocked to the side cradling the phone as I was still on the phone. This resulted in an injury to my back and neck which resulted in me being off work for at least six weeks. Cristina Sarabia moved past [unit supervisor] Ben Karabian, entered the space of the cubicle I was working in, and started poking her finger in my face. I was afraid she was going to hit me.”
The conduct, which Cole insisted was part of a campaign by Sarabia to harass her, was asserted by her to constitute false imprisonment and assault.
The Office of City Attorney did not respond to a request for comment.
Copyright 2017, Metropolitan News Company